Losing your hair can be very distressing, whether you expect it or not. If you’re a man with a family history of baldness, you probably know it’s coming for you. But if you’re a woman or if you’re still young, losing your hair can come as a surprise. In either case, it’s not something pleasant to experience, and chances are, you’re ready to do what it takes to reverse the process!
Many herbal supplements claim that they can bring your hair back to its full, healthy state. And recently, CBD companies have started making similar claims. But are those actually backed up by facts? Can CBD prevent or even reverse hair loss? Read on to find out!
What causes hair loss in men?
Becoming bald as you age is a normal part of life for millions of men all over the globe. Simply put, it’s a genetic trait that can be passed down by either the mother or father.
If you carry the male pattern baldness (also called androgenetic alopecia) gene, then you will start losing hair as your hormone levels naturally fluctuate. At first, this might only manifest as a receding hairline. But as you age, you will start to notice that you’re also losing hair on the crown of your head. This is due to your hair follicles shrinking and becoming unable to produce new hairs.
Some families have many instances of male pattern baldness, others barely have any. Moreover, some ethnic groups seem to be affected more than others. But in any case, genetic male pattern baldness is something you can’t avoid. And though it can be delayed, there are currently no ways to treat it.
If you experience hair loss very young, or without a family history of baldness, then it could be a symptom of something more serious. We recommend visiting your physician if this happens to you.
What causes hair loss in women?
Male pattern baldness is fairly straight forward: it’s a genetic trait that makes some people lose their hair as they age—and it’s rarely a symptom of a larger problem.
For women, things are a little bit different. It’s true that some women also experience genetic hair loss. This is called androgenetic alopecia. It only affects a small percentage of women, and it’s a gene that causes hair to thin out as you age.
However, there are many other reasons why women can experience hair loss at any age. It can be a symptom of a number of conditions, including:
- hypo- or hyperthyroidism
- celiac disease
It could also be a sign of infection, dietary deficiency, eating disorder, or mental illness.
Finally, in some cases, hair loss can result from heavy stress. If you start losing your hair after losing a loved one or undergoing major surgery, it just means that your body is responding to the heavy emotional impact of the event.
For women of any age, it’s important to consult a doctor if you experience hair loss: it could be a sign of a serious health problem that needs to be diagnosed early.
How is hair loss treated?
Treatment for hair loss will vary greatly depending on its cause.
If you experience genetic hair loss, then your best bet is to change your haircare routine. Using certain types of shampoos that contain minoxidil can prevent hair loss. There are also some prescription drugs that can delay baldness. These often come with heavy side-effects, so think seriously before you take them. Finally, surgery can be used as a last resort, to transplant new hair back onto your scalp.
For women, hair loss is often a result of hormonal imbalance. Therefore, medicine that balances out hormones can be used to reverse baldness.
If your hair loss is caused by illness or by a dietary deficiency, attending to that problem is the best way to get your hair back.
And finally, herbs like hemp may be able to help your hair grow back. And in recent years, CBD has been shown to be even more effective.
What is CBD?
CBD is a cannabis molecule with a wealth of interesting properties. Unlike other cannabinoids that can be found in hemp, CBD is not psychoactive. This means that it’s not used as a recreational drug. However, its effects on the body and mind are incredibly wide-ranging, making it a useful substance in medicine, psychiatry, and even for beauty.
Among its many benefits, CBD can:
- Prevent seizures
- Lower pain
- Fight Nausea
- Treat disorders like OCD and PTSD
- Lower your blood pressure
Non-prescription CBD products are not currently approved by the FDA. However, research suggests that this molecule is effective in treating a number of conditions. We recommend consulting with a medical professional to see if prescription CBD could help your condition.
Can CBD treat hair loss?
The short answer to this question is, it depends. We know, it’s not very satisfying! But the truth is that CBD will work on some people better than others, depending on the cause of their baldness.
But first, what are the reasons to think that CBD could help with hair loss?
A good nutritional profile
One of the main arguments in favor of using CBD oil for hair loss is that it contains good amounts of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, as well as all 21 amino acids that you need to build new hair. When these nutrients penetrate your scalp, they can give a boost to your hair follicle. As a result, expect thicker, healthier hair.
Unfortunately, that’s not to say that it will work with genetic baldness. When your hair follicles have shrunk so much that they are no longer able to produce new hair, no amount of fatty acids or protein can bring them back to their original state.
Boosts blood circulation
Another reason why applying CBD to your scalp could help is that it stimulates blood circulation. As this 2017 study showed, CBD relaxes your arteries, which increases blood flow through the whole body. When more blood flows to your hair follicles, they’re more active in producing new, healthier hair. So if you notice that your hair is thinning, using a CBD shampoo or a CBD mask for your scalp could give you an extra boost.
CBD also has powerful anti-inflammatory properties. And when we know that inflammation can be a risk factor behind baldness (as this 2011 study showed), there are good reasons to believe that using CBD on your scalp could make it healthier.
CBD and mental health
Finally, CBD is a great molecule for treating stress, anxiety, and depression. Scientists have found a correlation between depression, anxiety, and hair loss. It’s still unclear whether mental health symptoms can cause you to lose your hair, or whether hair loss itself worsens your mental health. But in any case, you’re more likely to be depressed and anxious if you’re getting bald. And taking CBD could definitely help with that. You can check out our guides to CBD for anxiety or CBD for depression here.
Can CBD reverse hair loss?
Will applying CBD to your scalp make your hair grow back? It could… but it’s unlikely. CBD can make your hair stronger, it can stimulate your hair follicles to delay the onset of baldness, and it can prevent the inflammation and anxiety which might be causing your hair loss.
However, if your baldness is genetic in nature, CBD will only be able to delay it—not reverse it.
How to use CBD for hair loss
If you’re curious about using CBD for hair loss, the good news is that there are a lot of interesting products for you to try.
If you suspect that your hair loss is caused mainly by heavy stress or some form of emotional trauma, then taking a daily CBD supplement may be the best way to help. You can turn to CBD oil, CBD capsules, gummies, or even vaping. Over time, CBD can decrease your levels of anxiety and make you feel more balanced, which could help bring your hair back to its normal state.
But if your hair loss is genetic, as it is for a majority of people, then you’ll be better served by topical CBD products. Look for shampoos, hair masks, or sprays that you can apply directly to your scalp. These products bring CBD right to the root of the problem: your hair follicles. It brings them the nutrients that they need to produce thicker hair, stimulates blood circulation, and lowers levels of inflammation. But in order for CBD to take effect, you need to make sure that you take some minutes to massage it into your scalp. Whatever product you choose, make sure it’s something pleasant to use, and which you don’t mind massaging and leaving on for a few minutes on a regular basis.
For many of us, hair loss is inevitable. It’s a natural result of genetics and age, and there’s nothing we can do about it. That is, unless we take action to delay that process! CBD is a very useful molecule that can help you prevent baldness by stimulating your hair follicles and giving them the nutrients they need to produce stronger hair. So if you’re looking for a natural hair loss solution, why not pick up some CBD-infused shampoo or a specialized hair mask?